State Agencies Commemorate National Crime Victims' Rights Week

Monday, April 11, 2016 | 11:45am

Nashville --- The Board of Parole (BOP), the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI), the Department of  Correction (TDOC) and the Tennessee Rehabilitative Initiative in Correction (TRICOR) are planting 11 trees in honor of crime victims during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 10-16. At each event, they’re also recognizing victim advocates for their work. 

Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park in Nashville was the site of the first event on Monday, April 11. Parole Board Chairman Richard Montgomery said, “Gov. Haslam issued a proclamation making this Crime Victims’ Rights Week in Tennessee, to coincide with the national observance. The proclamation acknowledges the importance of the    victim’s voice in all criminal justice proceedings.” 

TBI Director Mark Gwyn said, “Our agency has launched its own Victim Services Unit in the past year. We are to assisting crime victims in their dealings with TBI, and we are proud to be part of these events.”

TDOC Commissioner Derrick Schofield noted the importance of the observances. “This year’s national theme is Serving Victims, Building Trust, Restoring Hope. The four state agencies organizing these events realize the importance of assisting crime victims, and support the work done by victim advocates.”

TRICOR Interim Chief Executive Officer Raul Regalado’s agency provides markers for each tree. “This is the eighth year of these events. In that time, more than 75 trees have been planted. We want passersby to know why they were planted and who they honor.”

During the event, Pat Shea, CEO of the YWCA of Nashville and Middle Tennessee, was honored with the Tennessee 2016 Voice for Victims Award. The Davidson County Voice for Victims Award went to Shannon Travis of the Sexual Assault  Center.

TBI Director Mark Gwyn delivered the keynote speech. Steve Hayslip, morning anchor at Newschannel5 in Nashville, was the event emcee.

The other events this week take place in Memphis, Knoxville, Chattanooga, Jackson, Bristol, Gallatin, Sparta, Tullahoma and Franklin.

April 11 - Pat Shea (third from left), CEO of the YWCA of Nashville and Middle Tennessee, was honored with the Tennessee Voice for Victims Award at the statewide kick-off of state government’s National Crime Victims’ Rights Week tree plantings. From left to right are TDOC Probation Administrator Alisha James, TDOC Commissioner Derrick Schofield, Ms. Shea, Board of Parole Chairman Richard Montgomery, Board of Parole Victim Services Director Tina Fox, TDOC Victim Coordinator Tamika Dobbins, TRICOR Interim CEO Raul Regalado, TBI Director Mark Gwyn and TBI Victim Coordinator Cathy Blakely.